Read Part I here.
Read Part II here.
Read Part III here.
Read Part IV here.
Read Part V here.
Read Part VI here.
As we prepare to celebrate The Fatima Centennial at St. Joseph the Worker thru November 26, 2017, it helps for us to have a little background, and so for the next few months we will be getting to know our Lady of Fatima with some historical background and stories compiled by Fr. Joseph Previtali, a priest from the Archdiocese of San Francisco, and Adjunct Instructor of Dogmatics, St. Patrick's Seminary, Menlo Park.
Part VII: AFTER OUR LADY EXPLAINED that Francisco would have to pray many Rosaries before he could enter Heaven, she looked at him for some moments, her face filled with great compassion tinged with a little sadness. Then Lucia began to remember some deceased people in her life and asked about them.
"Is Maria Neves in heaven?"
"Yes, she is."
"She is in purgatory. Will you offer yourselves to God, and bear all the sufferings He sends you? In atonement for all the sins that offend Him? And for the conversion of sinners?"
"Oh, we will, we will!"
"Then you will have a great deal to suffer, but the grace of God will be with you and will strengthen you."
Then the Lady from Heaven opened her hands and the radiance grew, seeming to penetrate into the souls of the children. Lucia relates:
"We were bathed in a heavenly light that appeared to come directly from her hands. The light's reality cut into our hearts and our souls, and we knew somehow that this light was God, and we could see ourselves embraced in it. By an interior impulse of grace we fell to our knees, repeating in our hearts: 'Oh, Holy Trinity, we adore You. My God, my God, I love You in the Blessed Sacrament.'"
This light from the Blessed Mother was so powerful and pervasive that it gave the children a deep knowledge of themselves, great increasing their spiritual maturity, in accord with the calling that they had received from Our Lady to offer themselves as victim souls in reparation for the sins of the world that offend God so grievously. Lucia explains that this self-knowledge was so intense that it made them "see [themselves] in God more clearly in that light than in the best of mirrors."
Next Week: Part VIII of the fascinating story and history of Our Lady of Fatima.
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